How to Avoid Judge Judy

When I told my mother that TWD and I were *thinking* about moving in together, she gave me two pieces of advice.

1)      Make sure you get everything in writing.  You don’t want to end up like one of those trashy couples on Judge Judy.

2)      It won’t be easy.  Buying a house with someone else is one of the hardest things you’ll ever do.

I’m pretty sure I rolled my eyes at both remarks.  As if I’d be stupid enough to start co-mingling my finances without getting everything in writing!

Besides, buying a house with someone is only hard if you’re like my parents.  TWD and I are two rational and sane human beings.  How bad could it be?


As such, it was with high hopes that I slipped into my house-buying outfit (carefully constructed to convey both seriousness and a keen sense of design to the real estate agent) and caught the train to meet TWD.

We were prepared: coffee, clipboards, cameras, little blank worksheets we made in Excel for note taking.  I even promised not to write things like “yucky” or “icky” or “suuuuuper cuuuuuute!!!!!” as I had during our initial reconnaissance mission a few weeks earlier.  (For whatever reason, TWD had not found these notes particularly helpful.)

Being the real estate mogul that I am, I spent the afternoon looking down my nose and saying things like, “Well, I suppose this has potential…” so not to show divulge any actual enthusiasm on my part.  But TWD didn’t like any of the houses, and even though I liked two of them, neither actually met any of the criteria we’d established.

I’d been particularly hopeful about a cute little colonial on an historic street in the heart of town but it looked like Alice in Wonderland on the inside: all wonky floors and tiny rooms and a bathroom that was hard enough to navigate sober—let alone after a drink or two.

(Note to self: photos taken with a wide angle camera are not to be trusted.)

After saying goodbye to the realtor, we went to a pub to discuss our options.  It was then that playing house went from fun to very much not fun.  We were on completely different pages: downtown vs. suburbs, rehab vs. turnkey.  Worst of all, I had to admit that my mother was right.  Buying a house with someone else is one of the hardest things you’ll ever do.  And we’re only six houses in…

4 Responses to “How to Avoid Judge Judy”

  1. Jennie Saia

    Yes! My husband and I are so right together except when it comes to real estate and interior decorating. It’s an uphill battle for both of us, every single time. Good luck!


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